The 7 Habits of Highly Effective ServiceNow Admins

Kim Hougaard Simonsen

Kim Hougaard Simonsen

Solution Architect

To succeed as a ServiceNow Architect, System Administrator or Developer, you are required to understand and apply sound and sustainable design principles on the NOW Platform. These are essential habits to learn yourself to be among the most effective ServiceNow Admins in the industry.

This blog post helps you reap these benefits:

  • Strengthened system integrity
  • Improved platform user satisfaction
  • Increased business value realization potential

1 | Configure rather than customize

Whenever demands arise for new features or enhancements, don't step in the classic pitfall of customizing functionality in your instance before you are sure the NOW platform isn't supporting what your business requires of it.

Staying in alignment with ServiceNow's main branch ensures simple upgrades and easy system administration.

2 | Automate when possible

During deployments of new applications on the NOW platform and the potential requirements for data and administrative maintenance, make sure to identify candidates for automation. Keeping a tight ship is no challenge using seamless no/low-code automation with, i.e., Flows, Schedules Jobs, and Business Rules.

3 | Conditionalize never hard-code IDs

Be smart about your introductions of customer updates on your instance. Whenever you need to identify records in your business logic or code, remember to do so by leveraging the Condition Builder. Adhering to best practices on robust coding supports your instance manageability and upgradability significantly.

4 | Take a Security-by-Design attitude

Manage platform access, user administration, and general security posture of your NOW platform in such a way that whenever possible, you configure according to the principle of least privilege, separation of duties, and generally aiming to minimize vulnerable surface areas of your publicly reachable solution or feature.

5 | Stick to an Update Set migration procedure

Build, associate, and migrate your Update Sets smartly to ensure Update Set integrity and minimize errors or Preview Problems when committing your Customer Updates during migration.

6 | Place ServiceNow under Change Control

Production deployments should be under change control and as with your other production environments in your IT infrastructure.

7 | Plan your Upgrades

Bi-yearly feature releases with new applications and lots of new and enhanced features are yours to deploy, but it pays off to be proactive and prepare in advance. Study the coming releases and schedule your upgrades.

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